We have had an interesting relationship with the Spirit in Churches of Christ. In part this is one thing I love about our movement – there is no denominational hierarchy barking orders on what the official teaching of the church is supposed to be. On the other hand we somehow still have an unofficial official teaching on the Spirit over the years. In some corners of our movement one must have a certain view of the Spirit to be orthodox, to be a genuine Christian. I cannot help but think the Spirit does His work in spite of our misunderstandings and misapplications on this issue because the Spirit has been tasked with dispensing gracious gifts to an imperfect people since the beginning. Consider the first century church who the Holy Spirit enabled to prophesy and speak in tongues WHILE the ones with the gifts were misusing those gifts? You would think the Spirit would stop working in a moment like that and hang the first century tongue-speaker out to dry. The Spirit kept giving the gift even when people weren’t understanding it properly. I think the same is true today.
I would like to spend this month discussing the Holy Spirit. Part of what has spurred this on for me is the coming of Harbor (the Pepperdine Bible Lectures) in a couple of weeks where the theme will be “The Spirit-filled People of God.” Even if you can’t go make sure to catch the audio after the fact on itunes University! But I really want to tackle this for more practical reasons. Our people have a lot of questions about the Spirit and I would like for us to spend some time discussing the work of the Spirit in today’s church.
We can do better than reacting to other people’s theology. We can have a proactive, biblical view of the Spirit and a better understanding of how the Spirit operates today. It will take some effort to get there but it is worth the effort!
Welcome to April at Wineskins!